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Ulema: Eid-ul-Fiter prayers must be practiced as per pertinent guidelines

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(Last Updated On: May 23, 2020)

 The Ulema call on people to practice the Eid-ul-Fiter prayers in line with the guidelines given by the ministries of Hajj and Religious Affairs and Public Health.

In a resolution, the Ulema (religious scholars) asked the imams to shorten the Eid prayer sermons and focus their agenda on ending the war, bringing peace, and healthcare guidance against the Coronavirus.

In addition, the Ulema underline the need for healthcare measures, such as disinfecting the prayer venues, performing the prayers in the open air, keeping distance, and wearing masks.

They also have banned the presence of the infected from joining the congregations.

Aimed to prevent the outbreak of the Coronavirus, they want the people to celebrate the holiday indoors with their families, and seriously avoid in-person socializing such as visits, embracing, hugging, and handshakes.

In the meantime, Baghlan health officials announced that over 60 mosques where the prayers are scheduled to be held Sunday in Pol-e-Khumri, have been disinfected and that the campaign continues in all parts of the province.

The Baghlan police chief has also announced to provide special security for the prayer venues (mosques) and the city.

In Kabul, officials say the city will be completely quarantined during the Eid, and people should stay indoors throughout the days and avoid traveling at all to prevent the spread of the virus.

Meanwhile, the ministry of interior has said this Eid will be a curfew in Kabul and that the police are going to enforce the curfew strictly.

It is noteworthy that the health officials have consistently said that an unprecedented calamity is on its way to hit the nation unless the people abide by the rules of restrictions and follow the health guidelines.

Balkh

Balkh residents call on IEA to mark Nowruz festival

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(Last Updated On: March 18, 2022)

Residents of Balkh province on Thursday called on the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) to maintain the tradition of celebrating the new solar year as has been done for years.

Residents said that Nowruz celebrations are a tradition for Afghans and should be celebrated peacefully across Afghanistan.

“The festival was celebrated every year, it should also be celebrated this year. Our grandparents celebrated it every year. I call on Islamic Emirate to celebrate the festival,” said Mohammad Mustafa, a resident of Balkh.

“We call on Islamic Emirate to celebrate the new year. Visitors come from far to participate in the Nowruz festival,” said Mohammad Karim, another resident of Balkh.

Mazar-e-Sharif municipality, however, said that they have made preparations for Nowruz which is on March 21.

“People come for tourism here, it is a green city. No problems will exist, but it will be different,” said Qudratullah Tariq, Mazar-e-Sharif’s mayor.

Cultural experts also called for Nowruz celebrations to go ahead.

However, with only four days to go to Nowruz, few preparations have been made to usher in the new year.

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Balkh

Mazar Municipality prepares for Nowruz festival

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(Last Updated On: March 11, 2022)

Officials from Mazar-e-Sharif Municipality said on Thursday that preparations are underway for the upcoming Nowruz festival, which marks the start of the new Persian Solar Year.

The main Nowruz festival in Afghanistan is traditionally held around March 21 in Mazar in northern Balkh province.

“We are completely prepared,” said Mawlavi Mohammad Nasim Abid, deputy head of Mazar Municipality.

He said the city is currently being cleaned up and that the municipality “ensures our people that we made preparations and there are no problems regarding security.”

Afghans have meanwhile called on the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) to allow Nowruz celebrations to go ahead.

We “urge the government of Islamic Emirate to mark the Nowruz festival as it was marked in the past years,” said Mohammad Asif, a resident of Mazar.

IEA officials meanwhile said that there are two Eids for Muslims, and that Nowruz celebrations are not necessary.

“Our leaders have not talked about the Nowruz celebration so far. Preparation for this big festival is too soon,” said Balil Karimi, deputy spokesman of IEA.

Afghan Wireless Communication Company (AWCC) in coordination with Mazar Municipality has meanwhile stepped in again this year to help prepare the city for Nowruz.

The company has helped clean up the Hazrat Ali Shrine in Mazar.

“We work for the city’s greenery every year, and clean corners of Rawza-e-Mubarak. Our preparations are completed,” said Yafiz Saqat, a representative of AWCC in Balkh.

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Balkh

ADB approves APPC’s loan to enhance Afghanistan’s energy security

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(Last Updated On: June 18, 2020)

On 17 June, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Afghan Power Plant Company Limited (APPC) signed a $10 million loan, ADB said in a statement.

According to ADB, this loan is part of a financing package for the Mazar gas-fired power plant, supporting Afghanistan’s efforts to achieve long-term energy security through affordable domestic power sources.

The project is the first private sector gas-fired plant in Afghanistan to be funded by development finance institutions, says ADB.

ADB says that in line with its long-term corporate strategy, Strategy 2030, the bank supports essential infrastructure through the private sector in a fragile and conflict-affected situation.

“ADB will also administer a $10 million loan for the project provided by Leading Asia’s Private Infrastructure Fund (LEAP),” the statement adds.

The ABD says that the loan provides long-term financing to build and operate a 58.56-megawatt gas-fired power plant located near Mazar-i-Sharif in northern Afghanistan.

“The project cost a total of $89 million, will use indigenous gas and is expected to generate 404 gigawatt-hours of power annually,” the statement writes.

Director of Infrastructure Finance Chakraborty, said, “This project is definitive proof that indigenous gas-based power generation is capable of displacing electricity imports in Afghanistan and helping to deliver energy security.”

He added, “Its success will send an important signal to the market that Afghanistan’s power industry is now ready to attract more private sector investment and financing.”

APPC Chairman Ismail Ghazanfar said, “This is the first step in Ghazanfar Group’s vision of helping to develop 5,000 megawatts of energy generation facilities in Afghanistan through partnerships with international development banks, local and international companies, and the Government of Afghanistan.”

It is worth mentioning that Afghanistan imports at least 75% of its energy needs.

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